Sunday, October 30, 2011

India: Lakshadweep

130 tourists stranded in Lakshadweep
Press Trust of India
Posted on Oct 30, 2011 at 04:37am IST
Kochi: About 130 domestic tourists, including 26 children, are stranded at Kalpeni island in Lakshwadeep after locals prevented them from boarding a boat to reach their passenger vessel following an altercation with port authorities over some issue.
The tourists had come to Kalpeni from Kavaretti island on Saturday morning. They were to go back on Saturday evening after a day-long visit to Kalpeni but were not allowed by the locals to board the boat at the harbour, one of the tourists Kiran Vyas said.

The locals were miffed with the port authorities over some issue, tourists said.

Vyas, who hails from Gandhinagar in Gujarat, said he had come to Lakshwadeep with his family. After sightseeing at Kalpeni, they were to return by 5.30 PM to Kavaretti, he said.

Another tourist Minal Dave, also from Gujarat, said he had paid Rs 20,000 per person for a five-day package. There was no accommodation at Kalpeni and they were stranded in a tourist hut which does not have rooms, she said.

"We have no permission for night stay," she said. Meanwhile, a report from Ahmedabad said Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi tonight called up Union Home Minister P Chidambaram and sought immediate action for rescue of the tourists.

Around 40 stranded tourists are from Gujarat, officials said.

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